Issue 44(1) of the journal Cicindela is now hitting mailboxes. This one-paper issue features an article by Chandima D. Dangalle and Nirmalie Pallewatta (University of Colombo, Sri Lanka) and Alfred P. Vogler (The Natural History Museum, London) reporting the results of a survey of tiger beetles of Sri Lanka and analysis of their habitat specificity. The authors sampled 94 locations on the island representing six habitat types: coastal and beach habitat, river and stream banks, reservoir systems, urban man-made sites, agri-ecosystems and marshy areas, finding ten species in the genera Cylindera, Calomera, Hypaetha, Lophyra and Myriochile at 37 locations representing all habitat types except the last two. The study further revealed that the species of tiger beetles were restricted to different habitat types, with most displaying a high degree of habitat specificity. Statistical analysis revealed significant differences between two or more species in four factors: solar radiation (i.e., sun or shade), soil salinity, soil moisture and wind speed. This suggests that these are the key factors involved in habitat selectivity in Sri Lankan tiger beetle species. Other factors such as temperature, relative humidity, soil type and soil color did not differ significantly between habitats for the different species, suggesting that these criteria are essential for tiger beetle survival in any habitat type.
You may also notice that my photo of Cicindela arenicola, taken last fall in Idaho Falls, graces the cover of this latest issue. Contact Managing Editor Ron Huber to begin your subscription—membership is a very nominal $10 per year in the U.S., a little more elsewhere to cover additional postage.
Dangalle, C. D., N. Pallewatta & A. P. Vogler. 2012. Habitat specificity of tiger beetle species (Coleoptera, Cicindelidae) of Sri Lanka. Cicindela 44(1):1–32.